Reading Group: Contamination as Collaboration

Reading Group: Contamination as Collaboration


LATITUDE is excited to announce our second OpenED Program for 2018!

About OpenED: LATITUDE’s mission has always included a focus on shared education. In an effort to expand our educational opportunities, LATITUDE hosted an open call for educational programming proposals in the fall of 2017. From this open call LATITUDE will be running five pieces of public programming proposed by emerging local artists and scholars, and developed alongside LATITUDE staff.

Contamination as Collaboration is a reading and discussion group led by Lindsey French and Willy Smart. Stemming from Anna Lowenhaupt Tsing’s idea of “contamination as collaboration,” this group will build on a speculative suggestiveness that contamination is not only a pressing reality in the anthropocene but as well a vital model of queer collaboration and kinship. Queerness has long been charged with the danger to spread—in an era then where contamination has become global, queer forms of relationality that have long worked from an assumed position of toxicity may prove poignant and powerful.

The group will meet bi-weekly on Tuesdays from 6 - 9 PM starting May 1st & ending on June 26th, with an extra meeting on June 19th. You can preview the reading list here.

Space is limited to 10 participants so grab your spot early!

Questions? Contact us at

Please Note: LATITUDE never wants finances to stand in the way of participation in our programs. Please reach out to us to discuss financial assistance.

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Lindsey French is an artist whose work engages in gestures of sensual and mediated communication with landscapes and the nonhuman. Her projects materialize as texts written in collaboration with trees, scent transmissions, and performative lectures. She currently teaches at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in the Departments of Art and Technology Studies and Contemporary Practices.



Willy Smart is an artist who works in presentational and propositional forms. Willy makes lectures, sculpture, and publications that propose extended modes and objects of reading and recording. Willy directs the conceptual record label Fake Music ( and currently teaches at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in the Department of Visual and Critical Studies.